Houghton College recently awarded one of its most prestigious honors, the Excellence in Teaching Award, to Dr. Cathy Freytag, professor and associate dean for education.
Freytag has been a member of the Houghton community since 2003, after more than 12 years of service working with students with disabilities in both inclusive and self-contained public school classrooms. Her passion for collaborative teaching and equipping the next generation of educators led her to Houghton, where she has played a key role in the growth of the college’s teacher education program. In addition to sharing her insights on inclusive and special education, Freytag has led courses on exceptional learners and the Teaching in Urban America course, which takes students to Buffalo and exposes them to the dynamics of urban education.
Freytag “has been an encouragement and a leader for me and many others here at Houghton College,” remarks colleague Dr. Sunshine Sullivan, professor of education and department chair. “Her ability and willingness to listen for understanding, and support others in their reflective practice has cultivated a space where we can grow and celebrate with one another in important, caring ways.”
Additionally, Freytag has held leadership roles at Houghton, including department chair, area associate dean, and a recent election as faculty moderator. She has been published in numerous journals, including the International Christian Community of Teacher Educators Journal, Exceptional Individuals, Journal of Education and Christian Belief, New Teacher Advocate, and Special Education Leadership. Freytag has also presented and led roundtable sessions at New York State Association of Teacher Educators meetings, New York State Council for Exceptional Children conventions, and other conferences.
Freytag earned her bachelor’s degree from Carson-Newman College, a master’s degree from University of Alabama, and her doctorate from the University of Central Florida.
The Houghton College Excellence in Teaching Award honors a faculty member who meets a variety of criteria set by the Faculty Development Committee, including: stellar classroom/lab/studio instruction and thorough knowledge of the subject matter; active encouragement of students to think creatively and critically through mentoring, service learning and other collaborative activities; and the development and improvement of teaching in learning in self and others.